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another M&E Rudall copy review, and Seery comparison
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Author:  Eldarion [ Sat Mar 16, 2002 10:02 pm ]
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Hi all, I've received my M&E Rudall copy for about a week now. Although I would like to play it for a wee bit longer before saying anything, I'm having to leave for a while (in haste) so I'd thought I'd give you the opinions I (a 2mth flute beginner) and a couple of my friends (experienced fluteplayers) had of this flute before I go away.

The M&E is a easy flute to play, not difficult to fill, though it produces the best tone with a more focussed embouchure. The tone is rich, with a nice full sounding lower register, which I really adore. An experienced IR-trad fluteplayer I met over the week tried the flute and liked the sound very much. One thing I realised about this flute is that it lends itself very well to diaphramatic accents, and I felt it has a lot of maneuvering space in the timbre department. It is a flute with good volume, and "barks" quite well.

Needless to say the sound also depends quite a lot on the players skill. I get a very round tone with my beginners embouchure, while a friend of mine (Mike Spicer, fluteplayer and a flute forum lurker) gets a really nice strong reedy tone when he tried it.

Regarding intonation, F#, bell note D and Cnat (done OXX OOO) are all a bit flat. This might bother some people looking for a flute with perfect intonation. I'm not very picky in these areas so I'm perfectly fine with it. The flat F# and Cnat may be for just temperment, the old traditional sound anyway. I hear that this is the case for other M&E flutes too.

Another thing is that I find that triple tonguing goes quite well with this flute, and that is a plus point for me.

I was told from a couple of reliable sources that the M&E Rudall and normal M&E look almost the same. It is a little more slender, as Rudalls are. The balancing did not cause any problems for me and it is comfortable for me to hold.


Okay on to the Seery Vs. M&E Rudall "a la James Peeples".
This was a side-by-side comparison Mike Spicer and I did. We recorded both flutes in a recording studio, and I suspect the comparison clip will be up at Clips and Snips very soon.

Ease of play: M&E is easier to get a good tone out of than the Seery

Intonation: Seery more accurate. D is noticibly flat on M&E. Cnat and F# too

Finishing: Fingerholes are less refined than the Seery. The M&E fingerholes are bevelled, though not perfectly smooth on close scrutiny. Emb holes on both flutes are similiar in shape though. M&E looks visibly plastic. I assume that we all know how wood-like the Seery looks.

Sound: Surprisingly quite similiar to a properly played Seery. Seery has slightly brighter sound, M&E slightly darker/mellower
sounds almost identical on average quality mp3 recording, but decernable on live playing/original track in recording studio.

Volume: Almost no difference - upon analysis the amplitude of the WAVs from recording studio program.


Overall, I am very very happy with my M&E Rudall copy (although I'm trying not to rave over the excitement too much here) and have no regrets at all with it.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Eldarion on 2002-03-16 23:05 ]</font>

Author:  eskin [ Sun Mar 17, 2002 9:18 am ]
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Just a couple of notes on the intonation of the Rudall M&E...

The bottom D is by design a tad flat, as were the original Rudalls. If you push the bottom D a bit, you'll find that you get what is generally described as a "hard D", rich in harmonics and in tune. Most flutes of that era have this behavior and it allows you to really punch that bottom D.

As for the F-sharp and C natural, as with any flute there is considerable control and responsibility on the part of the player as to the tuning of each note, just with breath control, embrochure, and rolling in/out of the flute. On my R&R copy M&E I don't have any problems with intonation on these two notes. You might try very slightly rolling the flute out on these two notes and/or increasing/focusing the air flow. I can get as much as a 1/4 change in pitch both higher and lower by various combinations of the factors described above.

Glad you like the flute! I think its the best $325 I've spent in a long time.



Author:  Eldarion [ Sun Mar 17, 2002 7:50 pm ]
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Hey Mike, thanks for recommending the flute! Having lotsa fun with it.
By the way the sound file I mentioned in the first thread is up on Clips and Snips.

The Seery played is a polymer flute and not wood though.

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